Deaths: Live, Warren, Rocktashel


Professors Live and Warren...Mr. Rocktashel

Dr. Israel Live, an internationally known veterinary microbiologist who was active in the School of Veterinary Medicine for over 50 years, died on December 23 at the age of 88.

Born in Austria, Dr. Live studied at the University of Vienna before coming to America to take a V.M.D. at Penn in 1934, then an M.A. in 1936 and a Ph.D. in 1940. He joined the faculty as assistant professor in 1943, initially in veterinary pathology although his chief interest at the time was in bacteriology. After three years' supervision of the clinical pathology laboratory he moved to the Department of Bacteriology and Immunology. By 1953 he was professor of microbiology in the Vet School, with similar appointments in the Graduate School of Medicine and the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.

A former president of the American Association of Veterinary Bacteriologists, Dr. Live concentrated for many years on investigations in brucellosis, becoming a member of the World Health Organization's Expert Panel on Brucellosis in 1950, and chairing the National Brucellosis Conference in 1976.

Later he turned to studies on Staphylococci, particularly the characterization of human and canine Staphylococus aureus, working both here and abroad, in the Pasteur Institute in Paris, the Statens Serum Institut of Copenhagen, and the University of Bergen in Norway.

He is remembered by colleagues as quiet but approachable, "an exacting teacher who stresses fundamental aspects of microbiology," and a dedicated investigator who continued to do research on a voluntary basis after becoming emeritus professor in 1981.

He is survived by his wife, Dr. Anna Harris Live, who was the longtime director of English Study Programs at Penn, and by two sons.

Dr. Warren and friends at one of the annual ceremonies where the S. Reid Warren Award was presented.

Dr. S. Reid Warren, Jr., a well-rememberd emeritus professor of electrical engineering for whom SEAS's teaching award is named, died on January 13, at the age of 87.

As student, faculty member and emeritus professor he had been a member of the University community for over 70 years.

Dr. Warren came to Penn as a freshman after his graduation from Lansdowne High School in 1924. Taking his three degrees in electrical engineering from Penn's Moore School of Electrical Engineering--in 1928, 1929 and 1937--he began his career as a research associate in 1929, and became an instructor in 1933.

While rising through the ranks as assistant professor (1939), associate professor (1944) and full professor (1949) in the Moore School, Dr. Warren held parallel posts in the Graduate School of Medicine, carrying out his pioneering work in roentgenography. In one 15-year period he visited nearly 200 tuberculosis sanatoria throughout the U.S. to review x-ray techniques and improve the quality of radiology in those institutions. He also served as a radiology consultant to HUP, Jefferson, the Veterans Administration, U.S. Public Health Service and many hospitals and physicians in the eastern U.S. He was author or co- author of four books and some 40 chapters and papers in his field. In his later years he was particularly sought out for papers and presentations on engineering education, and he became known as an advocate of linkages between the humanities and engineering.

Dr. Warren was a technical advisor to the International Electrotechnical Commission and chaired local arrangements for its 50th anniversary meeting in Philadelphia in 1954. He also served as secretary of working groups which developed international definitions in the field of radiology and radiological physics.

On campus, under various titles (vice-dean, assistant vice- president and associate dean), he headed undergraduate affairs in engineering from 1951 through 1973, continuing as special advisor for two more years as he prepared for his retirement in 1976. He was a founding member of the University's Radiation Safety Committee in 1947, later chairing that and many other University-wide committees such as those on educational policy, undergraduate affairs, and honorary degrees.

He was also a mainstay of The Faculty Club--a board member in the Club's beginning years, 1956-60, and later vice president in 1975-77 and president in 1977-79.

Named a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 1938 and Fellow in Physics of the American College of Radiology in 1948, Dr. Warren was elected to numerous other honor societies during his long career. The American Institute for Electrical Engineers (a component of what is now the IEEE) cited him in 1953 "for outstanding leadership in the application of electrical engineering principles in the medical field, and for leadership in the promotion of appreciation of such work among both engineers and physicians." In 1970 the IEEE's Philadelphia Section gave him a special award for his many outstanding contributions to engineering education and electrical engineering. Students and alumni of SEAS established an annual award in his name in 1973, and in 1976 he was given the Engineering Alumni Society's D. Robert Yarnall Award for "outstanding contributions in the field of engineering to society." Still later, in 1984, the honor society Eta Kappa Nu conferred the title "Eminent Member," a designation given to "top engineers who are also considered benefactors of mankind."

Dr. Warren is survived by his wife of 65 years, the former Miriam Stradling; two sons, Alan and S. Reid III; two grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

Mr. Rocktashel, Accounts Payable

Frederick (Fred) P. Rocktashel, manager of Accounts Payable for nearly ten years, died on December 31 from complications due to AIDS. He was 49.

Known as "Rocky" by many of his friends, Mr. Rocktashel was a graduate of Reading Central Catholic High School in Reading and of St. Charles Borromeo Seminary in Overbrook, where he received a bachelor's degree in philosophy.

He enlisted in the U.S. Air Force, attained the rank of captain and as a pilot participated in the evacuation of Saigon during the last days of the Vietnam War.

After the war he was hired by the Catholic Relief Services as assistant director of a food program in the African country of Lesotho from 1977 to 1979. He then directed a similar food program in the African country of Benin from 1979 to 1981. While there, he was credited with saving the life of a young boy who was in danger of drowning at a local beach.

Upon his return to the U.S., he was employed in accounts payable at General Public Utilities in Reading, Pennsylvania, for several years before joining Penn in 1986. He served in that post until the summer of 1995, when he went on disability leave.

Mr. Rocktashel is survived by his companion, Paul Nutaitis; two brothers, George J. and James J. and two sisters, Rita M. Curtin and Mary Ann Stoltfus. In his will, he stipulated that in lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his memory to "any organization actively involved in servicing victims of AIDS or those who cared for them."